Como is a provincial capital located in the central-western part of the Lombardy region, overlooking the southern end of thehomonymous lake . What see in this wonderful and famous city?
A bit of history
The first populations to appreciate the strategic position of Como were probably the Ligurians , to whom the Gauls joined in the following centuries.
Like almost all of Lombardy in the second century BC, Como was conquered by the Romans , for whom it became an outpost of vital importance, given its privileged geographical position.
Over the centuries, the Larian city, after having fought for a long time with Milan, has known various dominations. Como, in fact, passed from the hands of the French to those of the Spaniards and then the Austrians , before becoming part of the Kingdom of Italy, with the Second War of Independence.
The history of the city is rich and complex . This is immediately apparent to the visitor, already upon visiting the center. The historic center of Como, in fact, still has the typical appearance of a Roman castrum . Como is undoubtedly a city rich in attractions of an artistic and architectural nature , which combines unique naturalistic and panoramic views.
Como: what to see
The visit can only start from the Duomo , one of the most significant places of worship in the whole of Northern Italy. The Cathedral, dedicated to the Blessed Virgin of the Assumption, is the seat of the diocesan bishop.
Located near the lake and 87 meters long, the Duomo is a landmark for the city, majestic and immediately recognizable. Its construction began in 1396, but its completion required hundreds of years of work and refinements.
The last of the great Gothic cathedrals built in Lombardy, the Cathedral of Como has a Latin cross plan, with three naves and a transept surmounted by the splendid dome, which was only finished in 1744.
The beginning of the construction of the Cathedral wanted to symbolize a particularly flourishing period in the history of the city, an indispensable hub of commercial transit between the rich municipalities of Northern Italy and the Germanic world. However, the long time span of the works means that numerous architectural styles are found in the construction of the church.
The predominant style remains the late Gothic, characterized by very rich decorations, vivacity of colors and sometimes dramatic accentuation of the forms.
The entrance door, which overlooks the central part of the structure, bears the date “July 3, 1459” on the base. Here we note the typical rose window, whose installation dates back to the end of the 15th century .
There are certainly numerous Gothic sculptures, clearly referable to religious themes, including the life of Mary. However, it is the whole complex system of lines and proportions that brings out the elegance of the sculptural elements of the Como Cathedral. The spiers and the central spire constantly guide the visitor’s gaze to an ideal elevation “from earth to heaven”.
What to see in Como, besides the Duomo? Among the beauties that the Larian capital preserves, we point out the following.
– The Palazzo del Broletto , the ancient seat of the municipality
– The Volta Temple , built in 1927 in a splendid setting by the lake, celebrates the centenary of the death of the scientist Alessandro Volta;
– Piazza Cavour , center of cultural life with a centuries-old history behind it;
– Porta Torre , an imposing fortification with a square plan, set in the medieval walls;
– the War Memorial , whose exteriors are made with Montorfano granite and Reppen limestone.
The splendid Brunate funicular is certainly worth a visit. Finally, among the things to see while visiting Como, you cannot miss a trip to the famous lake. Along Lake Como , nestled in the mountains, there are luxurious nineteenth-century villas, renowned restaurants, and many other natural and architectural beauties. The lake also offers the possibility of practicing water sports or relaxing immersed in a natural setting that has conquered tourists and celebrities from every corner of the planet.